Scotland XR occupies Shell gas rig, temporarily shutting down offshore project

Extinction Rebellion (XR) activists have occupied a massive gas rig leased to Shell and currently parked in Princess Alexandra Wharf , Dundee Habour, which had been destined for the North Sea.

Three women, Alison, Fiona and Jo, scaled the towers of Valaris’s Ensco 122 rig this morning and had intended to stay at the site for as long as possible to block it from leaving harbour, but were stymied by high winds later in the day. Leaving the rig this afternoon they were arrested shortly afterwards. In a statement XR Scotland said:

These activists had one chance, and they took it. In the end it was too dangerous to carry on. Others don’t get to choose what danger they are in. The climate crisis, driven by fossil fuel emissions, is putting millions, potentially billions, in grave danger.

This is just the beginning of Rig Rebellion 2.0. XR Scotland have a series of solidarity actions lined up. over the next 10 days some that we are going to try and spread as far and wide as possible.

We’ll have solidarity actions coming up throughout the week – to get involved, sign up for emails here. One hundred companies are to blame for 71% of CO2 emissions. 20 companies are responsible for a third of all carbon emissions. Shell is in the top ten.

Before the action Fiona said:

The 5.7 billion barrels currently available in our operating oil and gas fields give us zero chance of staying below “safe” 2°C warming. We are currently living in a world warmed by 1.1°C and are seeing the catastrophic, heartbreaking & devastating effects every day.

The rig had been due to begin a nine-month Shell contract for two wells this month. Shell said it was “aware of the protest action” and said the safety of both protesters and workers was “its prime concern”. And in a wildly ironic intervention the Oil and Gas UK organisation said the group’s activity was “dangerous and short-sighted.”

Climate campaign Greenpeace responded to the action saying “Oil and gas companies are digging us deeper into the Climate Emergency by continuing to drill for new fossil fuels. Show your support to these brave activists.”

And a Green Anti-Capitalist Front rep said: “XR Scotland are on it with the message that climate struggle is class struggle and are picking targets which will disrupt business as usual – really great stuff.”